On Wed­nes­day, May 6th, close to 3,000 com­mu­nity mem­bers at­tended a lec­ture at the Or­pheum Theatre by Jac­ques Her­zog, found­ing part­ner of Her­zog & de Meu­ron, the de­sign ar­chi­tects for the new Van­cou­ver Art Gallery. This public talk pro­vided an ex­cel­lent op­por­tu­nity to learn more about this award-win­ning firm and their ap­proach to the de­sign of the fu­ture Gallery, and was a tes­ti­mony to the great in­ter­est of the cit­i­zens of Van­cou­ver in this project and the work of Her­zog & de Meu­ron.

The Van­cou­ver Art Gallery now stands at the thresh­old of one of the most ex­cit­ing mo­ments in our 84 year his­tory. As one of the cor­ner­stone in­sti­tu­tions in this city, we’ve ex­pe­ri­enced sub­stan­tial achieve­ments in our artis­tic and ed­u­ca­tional pro­grams as well as in our or­ga­ni­za­tional ca­pac­ity. The Gallery’s pro­grams have en­livened lo­cal and in­ter­na­tional com­mu­ni­ties as we pre­sented some of the most ex­cit­ing artists from this place and around the world.

Our ac­tiv­i­ties con­tinue to have a pos­i­tive im­pact on the city’s econ­omy, aug­ment­ing job op­por­tu­ni­ties and sup­port­ing the tourism in­dus­try while rais­ing Van­cou­ver’s cul­tural pro­file within in­ter­na­tional realms. We’ve ac­com­plished so much in our cur­rent space, but with an au­di­ence sur­pass­ing 360,000 vis­i­tors an­nu­ally, the time has come for a new, ex­panded Van­cou­ver Art Gallery that will cre­ate and strengthen links be­tween artists, con­tem­po­rary and his­tor­i­cal art, and di­verse com­mu­ni­ties through­out the city, prov­ince and the world.

We are work­ing to cre­ate a re­mark­able new art mu­seum that will for­ever change the cre­ative and phys­i­cal land­scape of

Van­cou­ver. Our new mu­seum will serve the com­mu­ni­ties of to­mor­row by be­ing a gath­er­ing place for trans­for­ma­tive ex­pe­ri­ences, pro­vid­ing the space for quiet and rev­e­la­tory mo­ments that will help us to bet­ter un­der­stand our­selves and the com­plex world in which we live.

Fol­low­ing an un­prece­dented ini­tial in­vest­ment of $50 mil­lion by the Prov­ince of Bri­tish Columbia, and the City of Van­cou­ver’s vi­sion­ary de­ci­sion to des­ig­nate the city-owned site at Ge­or­gia and Cam­bie Streets for a new Gallery, we are thrilled to have se­lected Her­zog & de Meu­ron to de­sign our new, ex­panded home. Her­zog & de Meu­ron is in­ter­na­tion­ally renowned for their mu­seum build­ings, col­lab­o­ra­tions with artists and a care­ful at­ten­tion to place. The new build­ing for the Van­cou­ver Art Gallery will be their first project in Canada.

We are ready. The time has come for our com­mu­nity to join to­gether and cre­ate a Gallery that will pro­duce an ex­tra­or­di­nary le­gacy for the chil­dren of to­day and for gen­er­a­tions to come.

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